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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Reminder: Investigate Before You Invest

Sunday, Feb. 20 marked the start of Washington and America Saves Week, a seven-day campaign to encourage Americans to save for a secure retirement.

Washington Saves Week may spur investors to revisit their investment portfolios and consider new ways to put their savings to work for them.

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) and the Washington Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) urges investors to do their homework before they make any investment decisions.

Before you invest, check to make sure the investment and the investment professional or firm selling the product is registered by calling DFI at 1-877-RING DFI (746-4334).

NASAA also provides free online investor education resources to help investors evaluate the risks of various investment opportunities and spot the red flags of fraud.

NASAA’s Informed Investor series is a great place to get started on your way to savvy and safe investing. The online series of brief alerts and advisories helps investors assess popular investment opportunities, such as:
  • Franchises. High unemployment rates may spur would-be entrepreneurs to consider taking their futures into their own hands by starting a small business. Investing in an established franchise can be an attractive path to becoming your own boss, but investors should be aware of the potential pitfalls.
  • Gold-related Investments. Gold is a commodity, and, like other commodities, its price can fluctuate dramatically. NASAA encourages investors to read up on the many ways to invest in gold and learn the facts about each option before deciding to invest.
  • Peer-to-Peer Lending. Acting as online loan “matchmakers”, peer-to-peer lending services allow individuals and small businesses to receive loans that would otherwise be difficult or costly to obtain from traditional banks, while investors fund such loans based on the promise of a capital return.
For more information about Washington Saves Week visit

For more information about America Saves Week visit